We had a family barbecue for my father-in-law’s birthday in August and I wanted to make a Cake that would stand out. I tried to think of things I associated with him – my father-in-law is really handy, at everything from fixing fences to building a child’s ride on car from scratch so I had the idea of a tool box cake.
Looking at Google Images I realised there were some incredibly detailed, realistic tool box cakes and figured I wouldn’t have the time or skill to do anything like that. Rather than make something else altogether, I decided to make a simple rectangular red toolbox, with a separate lid, and make some tools separately to pull the whole thing together.
My father-in-law really likes banoffee pie so I decided that would be a good flavour for the cake and found a recipe in Fiona Cairns’ Birthday Cake book. The recipe in her book is designed to make cakes in the shape of a pair of dice – for someone who likes a game of chance perhaps – but it was easily adapted to a loaf tin shape. You can find the recipe online at Cooked.
I decided to make the lid separately and as I didn’t want it to be too heavy, I thought Rice Krispie cakes would be perfect. I’ve seen cakes where all sorts of parts were sculpted from rice krispies – like an animal or person where the limbs were made from rice krispies. I wasn’t sure what consistency to make my Rice Krispie Cake so took the easy way out and (kind of) cheated by using Kelloggs Rice Krispie squares. I sandwiched 6 – a mixture of chocolate flavour and plain – together with melted chocolate, in a block the length of my loaf tin, and put them in the fridge to set.
For the cake, I followed the recipe, mixing butter, sugar, mashed banana, eggs, vanilla, milk, flour, baking powder, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon. The mixture baked nicely in my loaf tin – it did create a bit of a dome which had to be sliced off to level the cake. I also cut some corners – because I had a lot of other food to prepare for the barbecue as well – with the frosting. Fiona Cairns gives a recipe for toffee buttercream which sounds really nice, but as I had a tin of Carnation Caramel I decided to make some regular buttercream and add that.
Finally I placed the tools on or around the tool box, secured the lid with a couple of cocktail sticks in an open position and the cake was ready to be presented. The cake itself was moist and delicious – I do recommend checking out Fiona Cairns’ recipe!